SMASH makes its long-awaited return to the NBC lineup for a second season on Tuesday, February 5 (9-10 p.m. ET) and will continue in its regular time slot on Tuesday, February 12 (10-11 p.m. ET). Season two will feature a slew of new talent, including Jennifer Hudson, Jeremy Jordan, Andy Mientus, Krysta Rodriguez, Sean Hayes, Jesse L. Martin, Liza Minnelli, Bernadette Peters, Nikki Blonski, and more.
BroadwayWorld's own Richard Ridge was invited to the SMASH set where he got to chat with Jeremy Jordan about the upcoming season. Check out what he had to say about joining the cast as the new bad boy character, balancing SMASH with NEWSIES and more, below!
Welcome to the world of Smash. What has it been like?
Welcome to you! I've been here for awhile. It's great, it couldn't be more different than theater, except for doing singing and dancing.
Do you like the world of TV?
Oh, I love it. Like I said, it's a complete departure for me. It's scenes out of order, it's waiting months and months to see the results of all your hard work, it's prerecording songs and then singing along with yourself. No, it's great, it's a totally new experience for me. I'd done a little bit when I did the film Joyful Noise, I had a little bit of experience doing a musical on film so I at least knew what to expect. It's just a lot of fun, the people are fun--it's cool to get to play a character that evolves. When you're doing a play, for instance, or even a movie, you play one character grows over 2-2 and 1/2 hours, and that's the end of that. With this, with every episode, there's something new that you learn, some new development with your character, and you get to sing new songs and you get to have different experiences that change and evolve and grow. So that's really interesting to me, I really enjoy that.
Let's talk about your character--where does his anger come from?
[laughs] I can't tell you where it comes from...he's very angry, he's a very angry young man. He's very passionate as well and he doesn't trust anybody except for maybe his best friend Kyle, played by Andy Mientus, until Karen comes in, Kat McPhee's character, and she sort of starts to open him up a little bit. But it's very very hard work on her part and he doesn't let it come easily. He's had a lot of really bad things happen to him in his life, but just recently things have been good. And that's when he started writing this musical with Kyle and so the idea of sharing this very personal thing to him, which is his music, he's never had to share with anybody except for maybe his best friend. And the only reason he does that is because his best friend is obsessed with musicals and sort of secretly in love with him. But it's very difficult for him to let go of anything or release control or trust anybody with his stuff. And so you see a lot of contention with some of the characters--he doesn't really get along with anybody, at all. He's a tough one to sort of like; hopefully you'll get to see glimpses into why he's that way and you'll see glimpses of how good he can be even though he isn't very good at--he may not get there very easily or at all.
Talk about the songs, it's all young songwriters, really fascinating. Were you a big fan for Season one, did you watch it?
Of course, I feel like everyone in the Broadway Community watched it--I mean, it's a show about us and while it is a bit dramatized and glamorized, and you may be embellished a bit here and there...if there's any target audience for Smash, it's people who live and work in our community. So of course I watched it, I laughed and cried and yelled at the screen just like everybody else. But yeah, I watched it, I was very dedicated in my watching it, and because of that and because of being in the community, joining the cast and feeling like I could lend my voice to help make the show better and to help the rest of the world and America get a better understanding and appreciation for our industry, I jumped at the chance.